Definition of paragon in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈparəɡ(ə)n/


1A person or thing regarded as a perfect example of a particular quality: it would have taken a paragon of virtue not to feel viciously jealous
More example sentences
  • This, after all, is the same industry that last year spent $1.7 billion on TV ads promoting its products and painting itself as a paragon of virtue and compassion.
  • Collins may not have been a paragon of virtue but he deserves better than to be remembered by future generations as a ruthless, self-serving and power-hungry meglomaniac.
  • Marigold means well in her vocation, but her strength of character and reputation as a paragon of all virtues isolates her from the reality of messy, suffering, worrying, humanity.
1.1A person or thing viewed as a model of excellence: your cook is a paragon
More example sentences
  • Left wing provocateurs whose work would be dismissed as uninteresting or merely crude if it were apolitical or as a sociological freak show if it were right wing tend to be discussed as paragons of graphic design excellence.
  • In a country where universities emphasise competitive sports sometimes even more than academics, Notre Dame, in Indiana, was long the paragon of undergraduate football excellence.
  • These films may not be shining paragons of filmmaking excellence, but they are exciting and contain great action scenes - and that's exactly what they aspire to be.
perfect example, shining example, good example, model, epitome, archetype, ideal, exemplar, nonpareil, paradigm, embodiment, personification, quintessence, standard, prototype, apotheosis, the crème de la crème, the beau idéal, acme;
jewel, gem, flower, angel, treasure;
a perfect example of its kind
informal one in a million, the bee's knees, something else, the tops
archaic a nonesuch
1.2A perfect diamond of 100 carats or more.
Example sentences
  • The number of perfect large diamonds, called paragons, is very small; and so we read, "Not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called" (1 Cor. 1:26).
  • Exceptionally large and beautiful stones, the so-called solitaires, paragons, or nonpareils, have, corresponding to the rarity of their occurrence, an exceptional value, which is subject to no rules and is governed solely by the special circumstances of the case.


Mid 16th century: from obsolete French, from Italian paragone 'touchstone to try good (gold) from bad', from medieval Greek parakonē 'whetstone'.

  • A paragon ‘a person or thing regarded as a perfect example’ is from an obsolete French word, from Italian paragone a ‘touchstone to try good gold from bad’, which came from Medieval Greek parakonē ‘whetstone’.

Words that rhyme with paragon

Aragon, tarragon

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: para|gon

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